Hideyuki Oguro will join the Cell Biology Department in September 2020, as an assistant professor, with a joint appointment in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology. His research concerns mechanisms that regulate hematopoietic stem cells, and investigates how in conditions where more blood is needed, hormonal signals stimulate the proliferation and mobilization of these stem cells to make more blood cells. In a recent paper (J. Clinical Investigation, 2017, 127: 3392-2401), Oguro and colleagues demonstrated that two endogenous estrogen receptor ligands, estradiol and 27-hydroxycholesterol, differentially induce proliferation and mobilization of hematopoietic stem cells, respectively. This hormonal regulation is particularly important during pregnancy when maternal blood expands rapidly (figure adopted from Frontiers in Endocrinology, 2019, 10:204), and can lead to new strategies to promote hematopoietic regeneration and to enhance mobilization of stem cells into the bloodstream for transplantation. An additional focus of Oguro’s research is to generate hematopoietic stem cells from human induced pluripotent stem cells by mimicking their developmental process.
Mayu Inaba joined the Cell Biology Department in April 2017, as an assistant professor. Her research concerns signaling between adult stem cells and the specialized microenvironments, called niches, that maintain stem cells in an undifferentiated and self-renewing state. In a recent paper (Nature, 2015; 523: 329-332), Inaba and colleagues demonstrated that microtubule-based nanotubes, which extend from stem cells into the cells of the niche, contribute to the short-range nature of this signaling. This image shows a 3D reconstruction of a Drosophila testicular niche, illustrating how microtubule nanotubes (green) penetrate into neighboring niche cells (red).